Not to be confused with This is the End, The World’s End is the latest and final offering from Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg, in their series of genre-busting movies that deal with responsibility against the odds. Shaun of the Dead, a zombie apocalypse horror, and Hot Fuzz, an action flick set in rural England, are now actual entries into their genres, rather than being considered ‘just parody movies’. And they are really f*****g funny. Which doesn’t stop in The World’s End.
Gary King (Pegg), and his four mates (Frost, Considine, Freeman and Marsan), reunite for a pub crawl of binge-drinking, epic proportions, but suddenly find themselves at the centre of something that proves out of this world.
And that’s all you’re getting. I am not going to ruin this movie for anyone. I am honestly still smiling (the screening was on Monday) because The World’s End was absolutely hilarious. Pegg and Wright have managed to sign off their trilogy, which is linked in thematics and tone rather than characters, in such style. The characters are wonderfully drawn, entirely believable and deliver some of the most immature yet serious lines in recent cinematic memory. It is evident that the actors are having a blast on set, which bleeds into their lines, and even though the tone is so similar to the previous two movies, it works so well. Paddy Considine perfect as the stoney-faced friend, Frost and Freeman nail their characters, and Marsan is in an unfamiliar, nice guy role; Wright mentioned he wrote Eddy a friendly character because, at a Q+A in Toronto when Marsan was promoting Tyrannosaur, he said he has never had consensual sex on camera.
Thematically, this movie deals with nostalgia and how hard it is to accept change. It deals with letting go of the past and moving on, which is embodied with consummate ease by Pegg in his character Gary King. Wright himself said that the movie also presents a reality of how things, such as the English high street, are being replaced by branded familiarity; the Starbucks effect. It owes a debt to Monty Python towards the end as things get unfathomably incongruous, and it ends up in places that aren’t telegraphed as things are in Shaun of the Dead.
The cinematographer who worked on this movie also worked on Scott Pilgrim, so the colours are rich and lighting is perfect for the genre. We have shots of pub fights that aren’t epileptic as in Hot Fuzz, but are choreographed to the bone; the camera lingers as the proverbial shit hits the fan in the second act. Once again, the music choice is perfect, but that does not come as a surprise as Wright knows how to formulate aural tone as well as visual.
The World’s End, being such a huge fan of Wright’s movies, is the perfect film for me. I got all nostalgic for my youth, as well as my local pub and a pint of cold amber. I laughed from the very first second until about five minutes ago, and every time I think about it I wish I was back in the screening. It doesn’t come out until 23rd August in the States, and I can assure you I will be first in line. And then when I get back to the UK in September I am going to watch it again.
See this movie.